7 Lessons That Every Entrepreneur Can Learn From The Wiz Live!

Photo by: Courtesy of NBC

Photo by: Courtesy of NBC

So tonight I watched the remake of a movie from my childhood, The Wiz!  I enjoyed this The Wiz LIVE TV version just as much as I did when I first fell in love with the movie with the amazing Diana Ross and Michael Jackson.  However, one thing was different this time when I watched it, and what was different was ME.  So this time as I watched, I watched with the mind of an Entrepreneur and boy oh boy was it full of lessons that we has Entrepreneurs must learn in order to get ahead in our businesses.

Was I the only one to see lesson after lesson being shared?  Welp just in case I was I thought I’d share some of the ones that stood out the most to me as I watched tonight’s Musical. I want to share the 7 lessons that I feel is most important for every entrepreneur to grasp from this show, trust me I KNOW there are many more.  But this is a blog post and not a book! LOL!

Where to start? Where to start? Well I’ll just start right here…

After Dorothy touches down in the Land of Oz and she’s trying to figure out how she'll get back home; Addaperle the Good Witch of the North tells her that she has to go and see the Wiz. It never even once crosses Dorothy’s mind that the answer may already be inside of her…. As Entrepreneurs we MUST 1.  Trust yourself to get where you’re going, stop looking for the Wiz (or anyone else) to make it happen for you.  And before anyone takes what I’m saying in the wrong way, I’m not saying that we don’t need support.  What I AM saying is that we too often don’t give ourselves enough credit for knowing what’s best for us and our business.  We sit around waiting for someone to give us our big break or be the mystical magical Oz with all the answers to our problems and to make our dreams come true.  Sorry but I’ll let you know that you have to put the work in.  We know by the end of The Wiz Dorothy realizes that the way for her to get to her dream was always inside of her.  She had to believe and do the work.  The same is true for all of us in business for ourselves.

Photo by: Virginia Sherwood/NBC

Photo by: Virginia Sherwood/NBC

Dorothy begins her journey down the yellow brick road and she runs into the first of those that will be on her team; the Scarecrow.  This is where the next lesson lies, 2.  Follow Your Own Mind and Stop Listening to the Haters.  As an Entrepreneur, really just as a person period, there is ALWAYS going to be people trying to tell you that you can’t do something.  You can’t have a business, you can’t run your business like that, and you’ll never get people to pay for that, YOU CAN’T WIN!  The question is are you going to stay stuck to the Pole of Stagnation (thanks Mom for that line) because you’re listening to everyone else?  Or are you going to have a mind of your own and do what you know you’ve been purposed to do anyway.  You have to keep moving forward despite what others say make the CHOICE to silence the negative chatter along your journey. Scarecrow decided not to listen with the encouragement of Dorothy and began his own journey toward greatness.  So let me be the one to encourage you.  Stop repeating the Crow Commandments and let’s ease on down this Road toward your Destiny.

On their next stop they come upon the Tin Man, one of my favorite characters of the play.  He was in need of a heart.  Which is lesson 3. This Entrepreneur Journey Takes Heart! This isn’t for the faint of heart.  Often time’s people think because you’re in business for yourself that it’s going to be easy and fun times.  Well if no one never told you, let me be the first…..This Entrepreneur Life Ain’t Easy!  If your heart isn’t in it the first sign of a Wicked Witch and you’ll be going back to your old life and quit on your dreams.  This is why I tell my clients that they must be strategic when building their brands.  You have to be in this for the long haul and know that it’s worth the cold nights and hard times.  Can’t nobody give you the heart you need, you have to want it bad enough to play full out! 

Next up on the journey is, you’ve guessed it the Cowardly Lion!  I mean did you see him play dead during that fight scene… LOL Ok back to the lessons….even though that’s one right there too… MINI SIDE LESSON ….you can’t just lay down and play dead when things get hard.  Which leads me to the actual lesson I want to discuss right here.  4.  Courage is a MUST in the pursuit of your Entrepreneurial Dreams!  So I’ll say this again in case you missed it earlier….. This Entrepreneur Life Ain’t Easy!  In order to play big you’re going to have the courage to do it scared, it's a must.  Sometimes you won’t be feeling brave and the thought of taking that NEXT step in the pursuit of your dreams is going to take blind courage to make it happen.  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to just take a leap of faith in my business with blind courage.  Sometimes things didn’t always go well, but a lot of times my mind was blown! So whatever you’ve been too scared to do…JUST DO IT!!!

Photo by: Virginia Sherwood/NBC

Photo by: Virginia Sherwood/NBC

Now Dorothy and her new friends are on their way to see the Great Wizard of Oz.  They get to Emerald City the place where all their dreams are supposed to come true.  However, when they get there and they meet the Wizard they learn another lesson that Entrepreneurs should also learn.  5.  Often when you think you’ve arrived there’s a detour thrown into your plans.  See when they reached the Emerald City that’s where the musical was supposed to end.  However the Wizard decided to send them on a detour to go and kill Evillene - The Wicked Witch of the West.  Don’t allow the detour to deter you from your plans.  It’s in the detour that you find your strength and you face your biggest fears and SLAY them!  They thought the challenge was unconquerable.  That they’d never survive it.  Is that how we play up the challenges that come our way as well?  Just to discover that the solution to the challenge is often not as difficult as we thought…in the end all they needed was a little water to slay their demons.  Are you missing the answer to conquering your fears and slaying your demons because the answer seems too simple?  I’ll let you marinate on that as I go on. 

Photo by: Virginia Sherwood/NBC

Photo by: Virginia Sherwood/NBC

During their time with Evillene there is another lesson to be learned as well.  Before I say what it is let me ask you this question first…. Who are you surrounding yourself with?  You have to be careful about the company you keep as an entrepreneur.  The lesson is this, 6.  Have a Squad that will keep it REAL with you and not just tell you want you want to hear.  YES I said it.  Just as you don’t need give the haters any attention you don’t need a bunch of Yes women/men in your circle either.  Are you busy running around like Evillene talking about, “Don’t you bring me no bad news!”, the minute someone tells you want you don’t want to hear?  Sometimes the truth is hard to hear, but you need to have people in your inner circle that will tell you the truth out of love for you and wanting to see you excel.  As a Branding Expert I often have to be honest and tell my clients they are playing small, that the fonts they want don’t go together, and sometimes I have to simply let them know that their visual representation of their brand is janky… yes janky and doing their Genius no justice! Just as Dorothy had to keep it real with the Scarecrow, Tin Man and Lion at some point along the journey.  So again I ask who are you surrounding yourself with?

Lastly the final lesson that I want to bring to your attention is this…. 7.  Hold on to your Why it is the Home of Your Destiny.  In the end of this play Dorothy has to come to the realization that home in Kansas with Auntie Em is where she is destined to be.  Your why is your compass.  You must hold on to the why of the why you got started in business in the first place.  And I challenge you to dig DEEP with your why.  Don’t just look at the surface.  It’s one thing to say your family is your why, but WHY is your family your WHY?  What about your family makes you want to pursue this life of an entrepreneur?  You have to be crystal clear on this in order to stay grounded and focused.  So in those times when it does get hard, which it will you too will be able to close your eyes and click your heels 3 times and go home back to the heart of why you’re doing all this in the first place.

So there you have it! 7 Lessons that every Entrepreneur can learn from The Wiz the musical. Hope that you’ll be able to take these lessons and find the mind to have courage and a heart while remaining anchored in the home of your why to keep you easing on down the road to your Destiny…..ok that was corny, but you get my point!  Just consider me your Glinda - The Good Witch of the South for Entrepreneurship! JUST BELIEVE BECAUSE I BELIEVE IN YOU!

Photo by: Virginia Sherwood/NBC

Photo by: Virginia Sherwood/NBC